The latest issue of OESE’s Superintendent Update is now available! The issue includes the latest on ESEA flexibility, information on recent guidance and studies put out by ED, and some resources for rural educators and administrators.
The OSHS, formerly known as the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools, administers programs that help ensure safe and healthy learning environments for students, including those that deal with safe and supportive schools; health, mental health, environmental health, and physical education; drug-violence prevention; character and civic education; and homeland security, emergency management, and school programs.
The OST is charged with providing financial assistance and other support, including through the administration of the School Improvement Grants (SIG) program, for state and district efforts to turn around the lowest-performing five percent of schools in each state.
Learn more about these two program offices by visiting their websites, which can be accessed via the links to the right or on OESE’s homepage.
On November 3-4, 2011, the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education within the U.S. Department of Education and the Children’s Bureau of the Administration for Children, Youth and Families within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will host a national meeting, Child Welfare, Education and the Courts: A Collaboration to Strengthen Educational Successes of Children and Youth in Foster Care.
The purpose of the meeting is to bring together State teams representing education and child welfare agencies, along with the judicial branch to discuss how best to promote educational stability and improve educational outcomes for children in foster care. Participating State teams are charged with creating a plan for cross-system collaboration to be implemented following the conference.
This meeting will assist in a more comprehensive and meaningful implementation of The Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-351). The law requires that State child welfare agencies include actions in case plans that will increase educational stability for children in foster care. In particular, the law specifically requires that child welfare agencies coordinate efforts with education agencies to keep children enrolled in their current school while in foster care, thereby keeping them connected with family, teachers and friends while continuing their progression through school.
For more information on the meeting and the Fostering Connections Act, please see below:
The Department is excited to announce the launch of version 2.0 of ED Data Express, an interactive Web site aimed at making accurate and timely K-12 education data available to the public.
The new version provides the public with more dynamic tools interact with the data such as –
A mapping feature that allows users to view the data displayed on a map of the United States;
A trend line tool, which displays a data element graphed across multiple school years;
A conditional analysis tool, which allows users to view one data element based on conditions set by another data element.
In addition, the site has improved documentation and added the ability to share information from the site using social networking tools, such as Facebook or Twitter. To view or explore the upgraded ED Data Express Web site, visit www.eddataexpress.ed.gov.
The Summer 2011 issue of the School Turnaround Newsletter is now available! The newsletter is a resource for states, districts, and schools who are undergoing school turnaround under the School Improvement Grants (SIG) program. This issue highlights NEA’s work with SIG schools under the Priority Schools Campaign, provides an example of a successful state monitoring system, and features an interview with a principal on implementing extended learning time. Past issues of the newsletter can be found here.
I’m pleased to invite you to a series of summer seminars hosted by the Department of Education called “Summer Seminars at Six: An Introduction to Education Policy.”
The seminars are designed to share information about education policy that will help teachers to be engaged and participate in policy discussions at the federal, state and district level. Led by teachers working at the Department, along with other staff, there will be opportunities for questions and discussion both in person and online.
Dates: Every other Thursday: July14, July 28, August 11 and August 25. Time: 6:00 PM ET-7:00 PM ET Location: U.S. Department of Education’s LBJ Building (400 Maryland Avenue SW, Washington, D.C. 20202) and online through U-Stream.
An ED 101 Primer, Thursday, July 14. Questions to be answered include:
What is the mission or purpose of the U.S. Department of Education?
How is education funded in the United States?
What is the organizational structure of ED, and where can I go for help with my issue?
What is Title I and how does it work?
Who’s on First? State and Federal Roles and Responsibilities for Education, Thursday, July 28. Questions to be answered include:
What are the states’ and the federal government’s responsibilities for education?
What is the Common Core?
What are the primary ED funding streams and competitive programs?
What is Race to the Top and how does it support teachers and students?
Fixing What’s Broken in No Child Left Behind, Thursday, August, 11. Questions to be answered include:
The Elementary and Secondary Education Act and No Child Left Behind—same or different?
What problems are teachers, schools, and states having with NCLB?
In their Blueprint for Reform, what do President Obama and Secretary Duncan propose to do to fix what is not working in NCLB?
What does the Blueprint propose with regard to testing?
What is the federal School Improvement Grant program for low-performing schools and how might it affect my school or state?
Leading Their Profession: Teachers and Education Policy, Thursday, August 25. Questions to be answered include:
What are ED’s proposals for strengthening teaching and supporting teachers?
What does the Blueprint say about teacher evaluations?
What can teachers do to get involved in educational issues both at the national level and in their state or district?
Colorín Colorado, a free web-based, bilingual service that provides information, activities, and advice for educators and Spanish-speaking families of English language learners, has posted a new video interview with Dr. Melendez for their “Meet the Expert” series.
Through this series of videos, Dr. Melendez talks about her favorite teacher, her experiences growing up as an English learner, and her thoughts on how educators and administrators can better support the growth and success of English learners. In the video below, Dr. Melendez recounts a story about Jesus, a special first grade student.
The rest of the videos and the transcript of the video can be found here.
I’m headed to Dallas in a few days to give a keynote speech at the national conference of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBBS). I’m excited to be able to meet the wonderful staff, mentors, and mentees who are part of this organization, and to help them reaffirm their commitment to serving our neediest youth, particularly those from low-income and minority backgrounds. Studies have shown that mentors have a positive effect on all aspects of their mentees’ lives — in school, at home, and with friends. Organizations like BBBS are also critical partners for our schools and districts, to provide the necessary support our children need for academic and personal success.
This event also has a special meaning for me, because I was invited to speak by one of my own mentors, Dr. Raymund Paredes, who serves as the chair of Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Nationwide Hispanic Advisory Council, and is currently the commissioner of higher education for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. I first met Dr. Paredes as a college student at UCLA, and he’s become one of my most trusted mentors and advisors. I’m honored to be able to share my own experiences with wonderful mentors like Dr. Paredes, and to provide encouragement to current mentors who are changing lives, one on one.
In this month’s Superintendent Monthly, you’ll find information on the Department’s budget tables for FY 2011, new data on our School Improvement Grants, and information on new guidance and programs at the Department. I hope the information is useful to you, and I encourage you to sign up to get the most up-to-date information from OESE.